THE SUSPICIONS OF MR. WHICHER

5 May
First published in Great Britain by Bloomsbury; and, Walker and Company in the U.S. - 2008 my soft cover edition published in 2009 Historical crime/non-fiction 372 pages including: Afterword; Postscript; Notes; List of Illustrations; Bibliography; Acknowledgements; and, Index - all of which you will want to read. 302 actual story-line pages

First published in Great Britain by Bloomsbury; and,
Walker and Company in the U.S. – 2008
my soft cover edition published in 2009
Historical crime/non-fiction
372 pages including: Afterword; Postscript; Notes; List of Illustrations; Bibliography; Acknowledgements; and, Index – all of which you will want to read.
302 actual story-line pages

In 1860, three year old Saville Kent was found at the bottom of an outdoor Privy (outhouse), his throat viciously cut. Two weeks into the investigation, it became all too clear that the local police still had no clues or suspects, so the case was turned over to *Detective Inspector Jonathan (Jack) Whicher of **Scotland Yard who soon uncovered the truth. Only thing is, no one believed him (it took a full five years and a confession to convict the murderer and vindicate Whicher, who by then, had lost favor as a detective).

Keep in mind that the art of Forensic Science was not what it is today. Criminal investigations and the ‘Detective’, per se, were a new concept then, so ‘detecting’ wasn’t treated the way it is now.

This is a fascinating story with many layers. Most of which have nothing to do with the murder itself but with the history behind the process of it. Some are explained in Footnotes which I found, at times, to be more interesting than the story itself. With included photographs and drawings, Summerscale peaks our interest, and brings to life the house on Road Hill.

1814 - 1881 Whicher was one of the original eight members of the Metropolitan Police's Detective Branch which was formed at Scotland Yard in 1842. He rose to the rank of Detective Inspector by 1860.

1814 – 1881 Whicher was one of the original eight members of the Metropolitan Police’s Detective Branch which was formed at Scotland Yard in 1842. He rose to the rank of Detective Inspector by 1860.

* “Whicher was the inspiration for (Wilkie Collins‘) cryptic character Sergeant Cuff in The Moonstone…” ; and, “Elements of the case surfaced in Charles Dickens’ last, unfinished novel, The Mystery of Edwin Drood.” Dickens and Collins are quoted throughout.

** Interesting tidbit: the first metropolitan police station was opened in 1829 and was soon dubbed Scotland Yard because it was located on a street called Great Scotland Yard, where the rear entrance to it’s original headquarters was located. Hence the name: Scotland Yard.

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3 Responses to “THE SUSPICIONS OF MR. WHICHER”

  1. themisanthropologist May 5, 2015 at 8:59 p05 #

    Oh good, you finally found (and read) it! 🙂

  2. Cathy746books May 5, 2015 at 8:59 p05 #

    I really enjoyed this one, and the TV adaptation is pretty good as well.

  3. beckmank May 5, 2015 at 8:59 p05 #

    Oh this looks right up my alley! I am going to add this to my list!

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